Dr. Lainy Day received her PhD from the University of Texas in Austin and completed postdoctoral research at the University of California Santa Barbara; James Cook University in Townsville, QLD, Australia; and the University of California Los Angeles. Her areas of research include behavioral neuroscience, neuroplasticity, evolution of cognition and motor-learning.
This course is an introduction to how nerve cells work singly and in concert to guide the behavior of animals. We will take a comparative approach to understand how brains have evolved to allow animals to perceive stimuli, adopt particular mating strategies, learn and guide behavior, and communicate. We will also talk about variation in individual animals abilities to cope with a range of environmental and social stimuli by means of learning and epigenetics.
By the end of the semester, students will
- develop a basic understanding of how nerve cells work, how brains are divided into functional units, and how evolution and development shape the nervous system;
- learn that the nervous system filters external stimuli, processes information, and guides behavioral output; and
- relate the text to current discoveries, politics, and the natural world.
“It is a great class. Fascinating topic, lots of information, awesome professor who wants you to succeed.”
“This class is amazing and so interesting. Day is a really good instructor and wants to see her students succeed. This is a great biology elective to take! 10/10”
“Dr. Day is very knowledgeable about neuroscience and is very approachable when it comes to you needing help outside of class. By far the BEST biology professor thus far….ever”